Sunday, December 22, 2013

January: Giant Modern Nine Patch

Let's Get Started!

(For those of you who are new to the group, you can click on photos to make them larger and see the work in better detail.)

This giant block will measure approximately 23 inches square when finished. It is made up of nine 8 inch blocks using solid colors. It is cut without the use of rulers, yes, freehand cutting with just your rotary cutter! This will allow for slight variations throughout the quilt that I find interesting.  Here is a look at what my final piece looks like sewn together. Yours will have a different arrangement that you create when you sew your 9 blocks together.

Here are the steps:

The solid colors that I am requesting are: various shades of red, browns and tans, whites and creams, black and grays, and subtle greens. Please use solid colors, not marbled fabrics:

Yes to solids such as Kona Cottons by Robert Kaufman:

No to marbled fabrics:
Here is the scrap assortment that I started with, I have a big selcetion of solid fabrics, you won't need this many. The more selection you do have allows for more play as you make your nine blocks and more variation in your final piece.
I used the black and white setting on my camera to check that I had an assortment of values or light, medium, and dark fabrics:

Cut your pieces into 3 inch width strips, if you are using scraps the lengths will vary but the pieces need to be at least 3" long and  up to 8.5 inches long. Remember just eyeball a 3 inch width and cut from top to bottom! (You can use the lines on your cutting mat as a guide.)

Next start making your 9 blocks.
For each block you will need 3 squares which measure 3 inches by 3 inches. Sew and then iron the seams.
Add a 3" x 8.5" inch strip to each side, iron the seams again.
Trim the blocks (you can use a ruler for this) to 8 inches square:
Play around with color combinations for each of the blocks until you have nine blocks, each measuring 8" square.
Now take some time to try some different arrangements for the nine blocks. It is helpful to pin the blocks up several times, take photos, and then decide which layout you like best. These were some of the ways I tried arranging the blocks before I came up with the arrangement that I liked best:
First try:
I didn't choose this one because I felt there was too much white on the left side.
Second try:
I didn't choose this one because I didn't like the connections of the black fabrics on the bottom left.
Third try:
The layout that I liked best. Shades more evenly distributed, I liked the bright red square in the very middle.
I used painter's tape to mark each block for location and direction and started sewing the nine blocks together:
I sewed together one row at a time:
I tried to match seams as much as possible but you can see the seam allignment is not perfect:
I hope you all enjoy making this giant nine patch. I already know that it is going to make one more beautiful quilt for my collection.
Thank you! Feel free to email any questions. I will get back to you as soon as I can.


  1. Wow- what a change! This will be really fun. Thanks for the challenge, Jennifer!

  2. I am looking forward getting stuck into this rotary

  3. Jennifer, your quilt choices are always SO great for a change of pace, way to start the year off fresh, and a little lesson built into them...I'm SO excited to dig into this..going to check out my local fabric store for some of the darker solids asap!! Hope Florida weather is being gentle on it is -20C...brrr